It's all about self-confidence for many young women. The self-confidence to be relaxed in a gym changing room or in a romantic situation. Many young women typically have security issues. It doesn’t help if a woman perceives herself to have breasts that are not the same size (breast asymmetry) and therefore look less than perfect.
Minor differences between breasts are common, especially during the early stages of breast development. All too often, breast asymmetry in adolescents and young women is dismissed as “simply a cosmetic concern.” some women are reassured by hearing that breast asymmetry is common. In others, breast prostheses can help to camouflage the asymmetry and improve social functioning.
Brian I. Labow, MD, FACS, has recently conducted some research into this topic along with colleagues at Boston Children’s Hospital. Their excellent study Their study – one of the first to analyze the benefits of surgery for benign breast asymmetry – appears in the October issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery®, the official medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons
in the following video, Brian Labow talks in detail on this study and it well worth watching to understand the full scope of the study.
They report on their experience with surgery to correct breast asymmetry in 45 young women, average age 18 years, between 2008 and 2018. All of the women had severe asymmetry, averaging two cup sizes difference between breasts. In all cases, the breast asymmetry was “benign” – not due to cancer.
For 28 patients, surgery consisted of breast augmentation on one or both sides. Fourteen patients underwent breast reduction on one side, sometimes with other procedures on the opposite breast. The remaining three patients underwent a combination or these or other procedures. This was therefor quite a large study and the results could certainly be useful to other surgical teams.
So what were their conclusions/
Before surgery, the women had significant reductions in self-esteem and in various aspects of quality of life compared to their peers – particularly social functioning (limitations in social activities due to physical or emotional problems) and emotional roles (limitations in usual activities due to emotional problems).
At follow-up 3.5 years later after surgery, the women had significant improvements in self-esteem, social functioning, and emotional roles, as well as in overall mental health. “Postoperatively, patients returned to a level of functioning commensurate with their peers,” Dr. Labow and coauthors write.
This is a very reassuring result from the study and would suggest that surgical intervention can play a vital role in dealing with breast asymmetry in young women.